The Transport Department (TD) today (October 12) said that 1823 Call Centre has so far received over 100 complaints related to public transport services affected by the illegal occupation of roads by protesters, adding that it showed the illegal protest activities have seriously affected the public's daily life.
At an inter-departmental press conference today, the Assistant Commissioner for Transport, Mr Albert Su, said that the complaints involved road closures, traffic congestion, change of routes and reduced services of public transport, and relocation of bus stops, etc., which had greatly increased the waiting and travelling time of the public. He called for understanding from the public as frontline staff members of the public transport organisations had already tried their best to provide services. If the major trunk roads being occupied by the protesters could not be re-opened, public transport services would continue to be affected.
Referring to the traffic situation today and tomorrow, Mr Su said that since today was Sunday, traffic flow was obviously less than usual. However, traffic on alternative routes was still slow during the occupation of major trunk roads. Traffic is most likely to be very congested tomorrow as it will be a normal working and school day. He called on members of the public to continue to set off early and allow more time for travelling. Motorists should also avoid driving to Hong Kong Island as far as possible.
He also reminded parents to get hold of the information of traffic diversion to better plan for taking their children to schools. Parents of younger children should also keep close contact with school bus operators on the routes and time for picking up their children. He also called on nanny bus drivers and nannies to make arrangements for taking care of young students on board during the journey.
Meanwhile, tens of thousands of exhibitors and visitors will flock to a large-scale fair to be held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre from tomorrow until Thursday. Therefore more vehicles will travel via Wan Chai North and pressures on roads in the vicinity will be increased.
Regarding public transport services, a total of 160 bus routes are affected today, including 14 suspended bus routes and 146 diverted bus routes. Cross harbour route 113 resumed partial service today with truncated route from Wan Chai to Kowloon East. There will also be six cross-harbour routes to partially extend their services to facilitate Mong Kok residents to cross the harbour by bus.
Tram services between Kennedy Town and Ice House Street, Shau Kei Wan and Victoria Park, and Happy Valley and Causeway Bay (circular), are in operation. The MTR has also increased services to cope with passenger demand. A total of 20 Green minibus routes are still diverted, suspended or with service adjusted.
The TD's Emergency Transport Co-ordination Centre will continue to monitor the road traffic situation and transport services. For details of the major traffic and transport arrangements currently implemented, please refer to the TD website (www.td.gov.hk).
Ends/Sunday, October 12, 2014
Issued at HKT 22:23